sponsors are donating portions of their ticket blocs so that area students
may participate. General admission is $30 per person. Anyone planning
to attend, even if your tickets are included in a sponsor or media bloc,
should call for reservations which are required because of limited seating.
Thanks for your
sponsored by Culinary
Union Local 226 , Laborers'
Union Local 169 and Circus
Circus Reno, this year's event will take place at
Circus Circus beginning at 6:00 p.m.
public is welcome at the event which will again feature food, scholarship
winners and entertainment.
Doors open at 5:30 p.m. on March
31, with the program beginning at 6:00 p.m. Nevadans who knew or worked
with Chávez will speak on their experiences. Members of his
immediate family, imcluding his brother, Librado, are again expected
In conjunction with the Washoe
County School District, students in three grade levels are again participating
in an essay contest. The competition is open to all students from
Kindergarten through 12th grade. Winners will read their variations
on this year's theme, "Should Congress declare a national holiday
to honor César Chávez?"
In late March, KNVV TV-41 (Charter
cable 22) will air special vignettes honoring César
Chávez. KNVV will also air a half-hour César
Chávez documentary as part of the celebration.
Chávez was born on March 31, 1927, on a small farm near Yuma,
Arizona. At 10 years of age, Chávez began life as a migrant
farm worker. This ultimately led to his cause or "La Causa,"
advocating for better wages and working conditions for the nation's
farm workers. In 1952, he began the National Farm Workers Association
(NFWA) to strive for equal rights for agricultural workers.
Chávez learned from and practiced the non-violent principles
of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Mohandas K. Gandhi. Chávez
died on April 23, 1993, at the age of 66. He was posthumously awarded
a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1994. The United States Postal
Service issued a commemorative
first class stamp bearing his image in 2003.
TO CHÁVEZ DAY
March 10, 1968,
Robert Kennedy, D-NY, and César Chávez met
in Delano, California, for the breaking of Chavez's anti-violence
physicians had contacted Kennedy to ask for his help in convincing
Chávez to end his fast before it did more damage to his health.
March 17, 1966,
farm workers led by César
began a march from Delano to Sacramento.
31, 1927, César
Chávez was born near Yuma, Ariz.
York Times obituary, April 24, 1993:
"Mr. Chávez, who was described by Robert F. Kennedy in
1968 as 'one of the heroic figures of our time,'was widely acknowledged
to have done more to improve the lot of the migrant farm worker than
anyone else. Fighting growers and shippers who for generations had
defeated efforts to unionize field workers, and later fighting rival
unionists, Mr. Chávez for the first time brought a degree of
stability and security to the lives of some migrant workers. Largely
because of him, the California Legislature in 1975 passed the nation's
first collective bargaining act outside Hawaii for farm workers, who
are largely excluded from Federal labor law coverage. 'For the first
time,' Mr. Chávez said when asked to describe the union's achievement,
'the farm worker got some power.' Asked what had motivated his stubborn
fight, he said, 'For many years I was a farm worker, a migratory worker,
and, well, personally and I'm being very frank maybe
it's just a matter of trying to even the score.'"
of longtime Nevada reporter Dennis Myers' Poor
Chávez Celebration IV
Left to right, Maria
Zamora, Librado "Lee" Chávez
and Tony Mayorga. Lee Chávez
holds up a United Farm Workers of America flag signed by
his late brother. The flag is part of Ms. Zamora's collection
memorabilia which she displayed at the 2004 Chávez
Celebration and will do so again this year. Ms. Zamora marched
in the 1960's and cooked for the multitudes as they trekked
across California. Tony Mayorga
is President of Laborers' Union Local 169, a founding
sponsor of the celebration.
[UPDATE: Librado Chávez
and a dozen family members will attend the 2008 event.]
César Chávez came to Reno
How often do we get to meet the
great men of our age? Of the great apostles of nonviolence
who have lived in our time and generations, I got to meet
only one, but that was a meaningful one. César
Chávez's (1986) visit to Reno gave me the opportunity
to meet him, to shake his hand, to stand in his presence.
It was an honor, one of the privileged moments of my life.
On March 10, 1968, Robert
Kennedy went to Delano to be with César
when he broke his fast for nonviolence. Senator Kennedy
said to César's
supporters in the farm workers, "And when your children
and grandchildren take their place in America, going to
high school and college and taking good jobs at good pay
when you look at them, you will say, 'I did this.
I was there, at the point of difficulty and danger'. And
though you may be old and bent from many years of labor,
no man will stand taller than you when you say, 'I marched
We have not been very good
custodians of that hope. Good jobs at good pay seem further
away than ever. We have to do better. César's
Courtesy of longtime Nevada reporter Dennis Myers'
Poor Denny's Almanac
Used by permission.
FLAG ART presented by César Chávez to Reno Musicians
Union Local 368 Secretary-Treasurer Beth Shay at
Chávez Day I on July 15, 1986. Each color is symbolic
black for the dark situation of the farmworkers of the
time; red for toil and sacrifice and the white circle for hope.
Chávez himself designed it.